Lots of people I follow on twitter [sic] (pretty much all of them actually) are Star Wars fans of some description – and the general consensus is that while they are quite surprised by the announcement they don’t necessarily have negative feeling about it. In fact many seem enthused by the prospect of a Star Wars film that George Lucas isn’t at the helm for.
If George no longer wants ownership of Star Wars, Indiana Jones, etc. etc., or the companies that have done the sound and special effects for countless films over the last 35 years there is probably no better home than Disney.
I am upset, however, at the current state that Star Wars is left in. A Star Wars without George Lucas is not the same Star Wars. Think about it. A New Hope was a smashing success in 1977. Arguably one of the biggest successes in film history on many fronts. And, economics aside, it is a great Sci-Fi film. Some say that Empire Strikes Back is one of the best sequels of all time. And, aside from the Ewoks, Return of the Jedi was about as good of a trilogy ender as anyone could hope for. And then, a slow plummet. The Special Editions. Episodes I, II, and III simply never had a chance. (By the way, I think Episode III was actually pretty great. The Emperor really comes out looking like a clear winner.) And the Bluray release.
The last thing George did was go in and fiddle with the originals and add Ewok eyelids and emotion to Darth Vader where no emotion was needed. As Dean said some are excited by the prospect of an Episode 7 that he has nothing to do with. I, on the other hand, was rooting for George to come back and make something great since I was very young. And now we’re left with George Lucas never doing another Star Wars. I guess I was always hoping he’d find that same spark he had in the 70s and 80s.
I hired Pete Rose in Atlantic City in 2003 when I worked for a sports memorabilia company to sign autographs. Out of the 45 or so athletes I worked with during my time there, including many hall of famers and still-working athletes, Pete Rose was one of the nicest to work with. The other stand-out in the “nice guy department” was Joe Theismann.
Working for a video-related startup for the past five plus years has given me the opportunity to see many ideas for episodic video content. Some great, some good, some bad. I’ve had a few dozen of my own.
One of my ideas was to create a video show about everything but the Internet or technology. For a long time there was a glut, and I’m sure there still is, of video podcasts about tech. I was going to call it “5 minutes about something else”. But, who has the time?
That’s why I’m happy to link to Made by Hand a series of short films (sounds much better than video podcast, doesn’t it?) about the people that make the stuff we use. Awesome.
“Well from my perspective, a film costs a lot of money. You could build three hospitals with the cost of one film and I take that very seriously. I take the responsibility of being a person involved in a piece of that product. The only way to be decent about it is to make that money back so at least you don’t feel that money is wasted.
If it’s cost a hundred million dollars and that money is completely wasted – it never even makes its money back – that would be so mortifying to me. What a waste of money. Better to put it into a hospital. Do you see what I’m saying?
So I feel it’s my responsibility to help the investors – and the investors are often you and me. We don’t realize it, but it’s our pension funds. Through that bank or company that’s investing in this hedge fund, that is investing in the film. So I feel a fiscal responsibility to help the investors.”
I know the resources for larger budget films typically come from multiple sources but I suppose I never realized how the failure of a film could have an effect on some of these funds. Go see a Helen Mirren film.
“Itâ€™s by far James Cameronâ€™s finest pieces of work and although Iâ€™ll be one of the many to grab a Blu-Ray copy, seeing it in theatre is an experience you should not miss out on regardless of how big your Hi-Def TV is. Even the 3D-glasses supplied were a considerable upgrade from the tradition paper and plastic ones so I kept them as a souvenir.”
Agreed, I will too, yes you should, and I did too (twice).
It is unfortunate that I have little faith in Tim Burton these days. I was very disappointed with Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I didn’t like the remake as much as I didn’t like the fact that they remade what I felt was a nearly timeless classic. Why remake something that is great and can stand on its own still?
I believe a live action Alice in Wonderland remake is warranted. But why give it to someone who botched his last two remakes? Lets face it, Planet of the Apes was not a good remake. Its only redeeming quality was its look.
But, as always with directors who disappoint – I always hope for the best.
If the camera model and the film type don’t mean too much to you – don’t worry. All you need to know is that my friend Albert Yee has managed to take some fantastic photos with his new toy, the Canon Canonet G-III QL17.
Last night, somewhere between the hours of 2:00am and 4:00am (yes, I was awake, lying in bed, watching TV) I watched an incredibly good documentary on PBS called THE ATOM SMASHERS which is part of the Independent Lens series.
Being a fan of science, I found this documentary very educational and entertaining and it helped to catch me up-to-date on some of the developments of subatomic research. Many of us have seen the headlines about CERN – but there is more much to the story about the research they will be doing at CERN. People have been doing this research for years.Â PhysicistsÂ at Fermilab, a government-funded particleÂ accelerator, have been searching for the Higgs boson before the idea for CERN was conceived. THE ATTOM SMASHERS reflects on their journey, struggles, successes, and failures.
Andy Baio, who runs one of my favorite weblogs Waxy.org, had released Code Rush, a documentary about the early days of Mozilla, on his site in its entirety (using Viddler, of course). Â Recently though, he received a “take down” notice from the film’s Director David Winton.
Andy acted quickly but then asked David to have a conversation about the film and its future.
Just a few nights ago I was watching a History Channel show dedicated to theÂ pursuitÂ of Bigfoot. Â Today I find something that I find completely fascinating; someone stabilized the infamousÂ Patterson-Gimlin Bigfoot film.
â€œI can go and make half a dozen â€˜THXes.â€™ Iâ€™ll lose everything I put into them, guaranteed. But I can have a lot of fun doing it.â€ — George Lucas
Ugh. Â This is the sameÂ drivelÂ that we heard from George Lucas while he was making the Star Wars prequels. Â He kept saying, and I’m quoting loosely here, that “once I’m done with these prequels I’m free to make whatever movies I want, even if I lose money”.
As it turns out, “whatever movies I want” is turning into more Star Wars projects. A lot more. Â Currently Lucasarts has created a full-length computer-animated feature-film (like the overuse of hyphens there?), a follow-up episodic computer-animated TV show (of which there are a reported 100 episodes in the bag), and a live action TV show that is currently in the works.
These are a lot of work, even with a staff of thousands that Lucas can beckon any time he needs them. Â Producing a film is no small task. Â So I think it will be years before we see a THX-esque style film from Lucas.
This isn’t to say that I’m complaining. Â I’m a Star Wars fan to the bone marrow. More! More! More! Â Oh, the reason I’m writing all of this is to tell you that this is a pretty good article in the New York Times.
Just a side note about this article: Â The title of theÂ pieceÂ is “Free to Follow His Heart Right Back to ‘Star Wars’” while the page title on the Web is “George Lucas, Free to Follow His Instincts Right Back to ‘Star Wars’”. Â I found that sorta interesting.
My good friend Sameer Barkawi, who has been writing on TUG.n a little lately, has wrapped up shooting on what will be his movie debut.
Sameer plays a homeless man. When Sameer came to visit us last month his hair was getting really long (not too much of a surprise if you know Sameer) and he said that he was “playing a bum” in an upcoming film project at school. Little did we know how awesome he’d look as a homeless person (pictured).
“I just made my first film debut. Two consecutive days of eight hour shoots, and the film is done. Thanks to the director, Brian Miller, for giving the role of the homeless painter. Also, thanks to Ross, Brianne, and everyone else responsible for making the shoot fun, even when I wasnâ€™t doing anything. The shoot was just more reason as to why Iâ€™m a film major.”
Film vs. Digital. There are very obvious pros and cons to both. On the one hand, the quality of photos taken on good film is vastly superior to those taken by your digital camera. Yet, the immediacy of digital photos, the ease of being able to get them into your computer to send across the globe, and the ability to create projects like books, calendars, etc – make my personal choice lean towards digital.
Do you still use film? If so, why? Is it because of the quality alone? Is it because you think this “digital thing” is only for the casual photographer?
I have a few friends, and relatives, that are still working with film. And some of them have real reasons, others simply have not yet had the time/money/reason to purchase a digital camera yet. Which is fine, but they’ve expressed that they eventually would like to “go digital”.
If you have not made the switch yet, I’d like to know if you have reasons. If you are a professional, do you use film or digital?
Oh, and one more question, if I may. If you use digital, what megapixel are you currently storing your photos at? For no other reason than price, Eliza and I are at 5.1. Someday we’ll get ourselves a really professional camera – since we love photos so much.